Endodontics is the area of dentistry that treats diseases and injuries of the tissues (pulpa) inside the tooth.
Endodontics is the treatment of dental nerves/ pulpa in the root canal structure.
The front teeth each have one root canal. Premolars either have one or two roots on the top, and one only on the bottom. Molars have three roots on the top and the bottom molars each have two roots. Healthy teeth that are vital each contain pulpa in the root canal, and react normally to hot or cold temperatures. In the case of a disease of the pulp such as a decay, trauma or fracture, the patients experiences pain. This is called acute pulpitits. In this diseased condition the tooth is extremely sensitive to cold or warm. This conditions calls for an immediate root canal treatment.
We use a local anasthetic to conduct this treatment. We remove the damaged pulp and clean the infected root canal and we place a root canal filling (opturation) inside. Following this, we also need to put a filling in the cavity. If the tooth crown structure is damaged, we need to place a crown on the damaged tooth.
This treatment can be conducted all in one visit to our office.
Treatment for chronic pulpitis
In the event that the pulpa is not vital anymore, a chronic pulpitis will occur. This occurs when a decayed root is not treated immediately. Following the initial cavity, the tooth decay spreads on to root apex, which is the end of the tooth in the parodontium, and causes the parodontium to become infected. This is called periodontitis. This treatment requires a longer time. First we need to clean the infected root canal, and only when the tooth is completely symptom free, pain free and not infected, can we put in the filling in the root canal. This cannot be done in a single sitting.
If the infection is on a too large scale, or due to the anatomy of the infected tooth (e.g. a curved root canal) it may be necessary to conduct an extraction of the infected tooth.